Asia Pacific forges ahead as KPMG's fastest growing region

06 January 2020 2 min. read
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Global professional services firm KPMG has highlighted its healthy regional growth over the past financial year, with Asia Pacific revenues up by 9.3 percent.

Despite bringing in just shy of $30 billion in global revenues for its 2019 financial year to the end of September, KPMG’s growth of 6.2 percent at constant rates was the slowest among the Big Four professional service firms over the past year – with rival Deloitte now well out ahead of the pack after adding a further $3 billion to record 2019 revenues of $46.2 billion, up by 9.4 percent worldwide.

KPMG's Asia Pacific division however continues to fire, again the firm’s fastest growing geography with a local currency revenue increase of 9.3 percent, the region now contributing in excess of $5 billion to the firm’s global total. The positive regional results – backing up on gains of over 8 percent for each of the past two years – were in part driven by a significant rise in its local Advisory services division.

“I'm particularly delighted that Asia Pacific continues to be the fastest growing region at KPMG, driven by a 14.1% growth in services provided by Advisory,” said KPMG China and Asia Pacific regional Chairman Honson To. “The trajectory continues to look healthy for KPMG in Asia Pacific as we grow stronger together, and as the organisation looks to this region to act as a global growth engine.”

Honson To - Chairman, KPMG China and Asia Pacific

While all three of the firm’s key functions – Audit, Tax & Legal, and Advisory – achieved growth over the past year, the boom in its Advisory function to $2.13 billion notably sees it poised to overtake the firm’s traditional Audit line, which remains a fraction ahead at $2.24 billion. Tax & Legal meanwhile brought in the remaining $87 million, and is continuing to be expanded across the region.

In addition to growth in Advisory, the firm cited its ambitious strategy announced in 2018 for its strong regional results, which included a $1 billion multi-year regional investment into people, innovation and technology and the stated aim to double in size by 2023. Those initiatives – in line with the more recent $5 billion five-year investment announcement at the global level – the firm says, are starting to take off.

“Ways of working are evolving, expectations are changing, geopolitics are impacting trading performance and technology is racing ahead, sometimes even before the last new thing has been fully explored,” said To, pointing to new cybersecurity, blockchain, cloud-based and technology tools. “Our clients are reacting positively to the services and solutions which are helping them to transform.”

KPMG also highlighted its APAC workforce which has swelled to 46,000. “To this end, KPMG’s investments in people remain unabated. We continue our plans to create more professional roles focused on broadening our capability to include STEM skills and developing the next generation of cyber security, cloud and regulatory change experts, solution architects and digital transformation specialists.”